The Euro 2012 ended on a high for the Spaniards as they successfully defended their European title. As Platini said in the final press conference marking the end of the football carnival , it was a huge boost for the host countries. Over the month, moments have been created that define the love of football and something that will be remembered by those who witnessed it for a long time. Lets have a look at the top 5 of them!
They’re boring. A statement that was at its saturation point as Spain kept playing their Tiki Taka style of dominance by using the False 9 method in which a midfielder was in front and there was no striker in the formation of 4-6-0. Even though the irony is that the 0 guy in the formation ended up getting the golden boot, Spain showed their supremacy by finishing off Italy with a final score of 4-0 after drawing the Azzurri’s in group stages. They looked shaky in the start which drew criticism from pundits including Arsene Wenger who said that Spain were betraying their own philosophy. He said
Originally they wanted possession in order to attack and win the game; now it seems to be first and foremost way not to lose.
True, it did look like that in the start but Vincent Del Bosque’s men silenced their critics by running riot in the final with an emphatic win that saw La Furia Roja become the first team in history to win three back-to-back major tournaments.
The force with which Mario Balloteli’s shot struck Manuel Neur’s net was stunning and showed why the man is as great on field than he is off it. He surpassed all expectations. He played a crucial role in the run-up to the final and was also in contention for the golden boot. When the Premier League stars like Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney were expected to shine, people did not believe that Ballotelli would do something for the Italians. His shirtless celebration has turned out to be an internet sensation with many variations to it. One of the most memorable moments of the tournament.
As their team was busy picking the ball from the back of the net, the Irish fans made it clear that they had come to enjoy the game and take in the moment for as long as possible. They came there to support and support they did. When Fernando Torres scored his second and Spain’s fourth goal of the night, one could see clearly that the Irish fans were singing as the Spanish fans just stared at them. In the last 10 minutes when it was quite clear that their team was going back home, they all sang ”Fields of Athenry” which made everyone wonder how they don’t have a good team. Support has been ever present in the tournament but the Irish fans have been the most impressive this time and made sure that Ireland gets it name in the history books as the best supported team in Europe.
When it comes to supporting your country, some people would just about do anything. As Alessandro Diamanti stepped up to take the winning penalty, English fans closed their eyes, but one man identified as Tim O’Leary a millionaire business man, did his bit for the team. Tim supported the Three Lions in the Euro 2004 and both the 2006 and 2010 World Cup and said he would continue doing so, in hope of seeing some celebration. From the picture it can be seen that his friend was also about to remove his trousers to distract Diamanti who coolly took his penalty and place the Azzurri’s in the finals.
The perfect penalty. The man has showed why he is still one of the best out there and before the tournament the talk was going on only about Robin Van Persie, Cristiano Ronaldo, Mesut Ozil and other superstars who have been excellent for their club. But Pirlo’s magnificent performance topped by a fantastic Paneka has been the highlight of the tournament as he defied his ageing body. A man who was put oxygen masks to supply more oxygen to his muscles, to keep him fit for the upcoming matches , controlled the midfield against Germany as Schweinsteiger and Khedira failed to rise for the moment. If it wasn’t for Iniesta and Spain winning, he was the real player of the tournament. One could only wonder where Italy would be without him in the coming years.